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Molecular Formula
MDL Number
Molecular Weight
MOL File

Chemical Properties

Benzene is a clear, volatile, colorless, highly flammable liquid with a pleasant, characteristic odor.
colourless liquid
Detectable levels of benzene have been found in a number of soft drinks that contain either a sodium or potassium benzoate preservative and ascorbic acid, and 'diet' type products containing no added sugar are reported to be particularly likely to contain benzene at detectable levels. Surveys carried out in the USA, the UK and Canada have all confirmed that a small proportion of these products may contain low levels of benzene. For example, in a survey of 86 samples analysed by the FDA between April 2006 and March 2007, only five products were found to contain benzene at concentrations above 5 ug kg-1. The levels found were in a range from approximately 10–90 ug kg-1. A survey of 150 UK-produced soft drinks by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) published in 2006 showed that four products contained benzene at levels above 10 ug kg-1, and the highest level recorded was 28 ug kg-1. However, it has been reported that higher levels may develop in these products during prolonged storage, especially if they are exposed to daylight.
Benzene may also be formed in some mango and cranberry drinks in the absence of added preservatives, because these fruits contain natural benzoates.
5.5 °C(lit.)

80 °C(lit.)

0.874 g/mL at 25 °C(lit.)

vapor density 
2.77 (vs air)

vapor pressure 
166 mm Hg ( 37.7 °C)

refractive index 
n20/D 1.501(lit.)

12 °F

storage temp. 
Stable. Substances to be avoided include strong oxidizing agents, sulfuric acid, nitric acid, halogens. Highly flammable.
Water Solubility 
0.18 g/100 mL
Benzene is also known as benzol, benzole, coal tar naphtha, and phenyl hydride, benzene is a clear, colorless, flammable liquid made by passing coke gas through oil, which is then distilled to produce benzene and toluol. The benzene is separated from the toluol by fractional distillation. Benzene is soluble in alcohol, ether, chloroform, and glacial acetic acid, but it is insoluble in water. Benzene was used as a solvent for many photographic operations in the 19th century. In the collodion process, benzene was used to dissolve rubber to both subcoat and supercoat negatives. It was also used as a solvent for Canada balsam in the Cutting method of sealing ambrotypes and cementing lens elements. Benzene was also used as a solvent for wax, gums, resins, and amber and in particular for retouching varnishes applied to silver bromide gelatin negatives.
Manufacturing of ethylbenzene (for styrene monomer), dodecylbenzene (for detergents), cyclo- hexane (for nylon), phenol, nitrobenzene (for ani- line), maleic anhydride, chlorobenzene, diphenyl, benzene hexachloride, benzene-sulfonic acid, and as a solvent.
CAS DataBase Reference
71-43-2(CAS DataBase Reference)
NIST Chemistry Reference
EPA Substance Registry System
71-43-2(EPA Substance)

Hazard Information

Chemical Properties
Benzene is a colorless, flammable liquid with a pleasant odor. It is used as a solvent in many areas of industries, such as rubber and shoe manufacturing, and in the production of other important substances, such as styrene, phenol, and cyclohexane. It is essential in the manufacture of detergents, pesticides, solvents, and paint removers. It is present in fuels such as gasoline up to the level of 5%.
General Description
A clear colorless liquid with a petroleum-like odor. Flash point less than 0°F. Less dense than water and slightly soluble in water. Hence floats on water. Vapors are heavier than air.
Reactivity Profile
BENZENE(71-43-2) reacts vigorously with allyl chloride or other alkyl halides even at minus 70°C in the presence of ethyl aluminum dichloride or ethyl aluminum sesquichloride. Explosions have been reported [NFPA 491M 1991]. Ignites in contact with powdered chromic anhydride [Mellor 11:235 1946-47]. Incompatible with oxidizing agents such as nitric acid. Mixtures with bromine trifluoride, bromine pentafluoride, iodine pentafluoride, iodine heptafluoride and other interhalogens can ignite upon heating [Bretherick 5th ed. 1995]. BENZENE(71-43-2) and cyanogen halides yield HCl as a byproduct (Hagedorn, F. H. Gelbke, and Federal Republic of Germany. 2002. Nitriles. In Ullman Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.). The reaction of BENZENE(71-43-2) and trichloroacetonitrile evolves toxic chloroform and HCl gasses. (Hagedorn, F., H.-P. Gelbke, and Federal Republic of Germany. 2002. Nitriles. In Ullman Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.).
Air & Water Reactions
Highly flammable. Slightly soluble in water.
A confirmed carcinogen. Highly toxic. Flammable, dangerous fire risk. Explosive limits in air 1.5 to 8% by volume.
Health Hazard
Dizziness, excitation, pallor, followed by flushing, weakness, headache, breathlessness, chest constriction, nausea, and vomiting. Coma and possible death.
Health Hazard
Exposure to low concentrations of benzene vapor or liquid causes dizziness, lightheadedness, headache, loss of appetite, stomach upset, and irritation to the nose and throat. Prolonged exposure to high concentrations of benzene leads to functional irregularities in the heart beat and in severe cases to death. Benzene is a known carcinogen to humans. It causes leukemia and blood disorders such as aplastic anemia. The major types of leukemia related to benzene exposure are (i) acute myelogenous leukemia (AML); (ii) acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL); (iii) chronic myelogenous leukemia, also called chronic myeloid leukemia (CML); (iv) chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), and hairy cell leukemia (HCL). Occupational exposure to benzene is frequent, such as in road-tanker drivers and Chinese glueand shoe-making factory workers. Exposure to benzene has been linked with the development of rarer forms of leukemia, such as AML and ALL. It has also been linked to lymphoma and rare blood diseases
Potential Exposure
Benzene is used as a constituent in motor fuels; as a solvent for fats; inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber, in the extraction of oils from seeds and nuts; in photogravure printing. It is also used as a chemical intermediate. By alkylation, chlorination, nitration, and sulfonation, chemicals, such as styrene, phenols, and malefic anhydride are produced. Benzene is also used in the manufacture of detergents, explosives, pharmaceuticals; in the manufacture of cyclohexane and ethylbenzene; and dye-stuffs. Increased concern for benzene as a significant environmental pollutant arises from public exposure to the presence of benzene in gasoline and the increased content in gasoline due to requirements for unleaded fuels for automobiles equipped with catalytic exhaust converters.
Fire Hazard
Behavior in Fire: Vapor is heavier than air and may travel considerable distance to a source of ignition and flash back.
First aid
If this chemical gets into the eyes, remove any contact lenses at once and irrigate immediately for at least 15 minutes, occasionally lifting upper and lower lids. Seek medical attention immediately. If this chemical contacts the skin, remove contaminated clothing and wash immediately with soap and water. Seek medical attention immediately. If this chemical has been inhaled, remove from exposure, begin rescue breathing (using universal precautions, including resuscitation mask) if breathing has stopped and CPR if heart action has stopped. Transfer promptly to a medical facility. When this chemical has been swallowed, rinse mouth, get medical attention. Do not induce vomiting.
UN1114 Benzene, Hazard Class: 3; Labels: 3— Flammable liquid
Incompatible with oxidizers (chlorates, nitrates, peroxides, permanganates, perchlorates, chlorine, bromine, fluorine, etc.); contact may cause fires or explosions. Keep away from alkaline materials, strong bases, strong acids, oxoacids, epoxides, many fluorides and perchlorates, nitric acid.
Waste Disposal
Dissolve or mix the material with a combustible solvent and burn in a chemical incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber. All federal, state, and local environmental regulations must be observed. Dilution with alcohol or acetone to minimize smoke is recommended. Bacterial degradation is also possible.

Safety Data

Hazard Codes 
Risk Statements 
R45:May cause cancer.
R11:Highly Flammable.
R36/38:Irritating to eyes and skin .
R48/23/24/25:Toxic: danger of serious damage to health by prolonged exposure through inhalation, in contact with skin and if swallowed .
R65:Harmful: May cause lung damage if swallowed.
R39/23/24/25:Toxic: danger of very serious irreversible effects through inhalation, in contact with skin and if swallowed .
R23/24/25:Toxic by inhalation, in contact with skin and if swallowed .
Safety Statements 
S53:Avoid exposure-obtain special instruction before use .
S45:In case of accident or if you feel unwell, seek medical advice immediately (show label where possible) .
S36/37:Wear suitable protective clothing and gloves .
UN 1114 3/PG 2

WGK Germany 


HS Code 
Safety Profile
Confirmed human carcinogen producing myeloid leukemia, Hodgkin's dsease, and lymphomas by inhalation. Experimental carcinogenic, neoplastigenic, and tumorigenic data. A human poison by inhalation. An experimental poison by skin contact, intraperitoneal, intravenous, and possibly other routes. Moderately toxic by ingestion and subcutaneous routes. A severe eye and moderate sktn irritant. Human systemic effects by inhalation and ingestion: blood changes, increased body temperature. Experimental teratogenic and reproductive effects. Human mutation data reported. A narcotic. In industry, inhalation is the primary route of chronic benzene poisoning. Poisoning by skin contact has been reported. Recent (1 987) research indicates that effects are seen at less than 1 ppm. Exposures needed to be reduced to 0.1 ppm before no toxic effects were observed. Elimination is chiefly through the lungs. A common air contaminant. heat or flame. Explodes on contact with diborane, bromine pentafluoride, permanganic acid, peroxornonosulfuric acid, and peroxodisulfuric acid. Forms sensitive, explosive mixtures with iodine pentafluoride, silver perchlorate, nitryl perchlorate, nitric acid, liquid oxygen, ozone, and arsenic pentafluoride + potassium methoxide (explodes above 30℃). Ignites on contact with sodium peroxide + water, dioxygenyl tetrafluoroborate, iodine heptafluoride, and dioxygen difluoride. Vigorous or incandescent reaction with hydrogen + Raney nickel (above 210℃), uranium hexafluoride, and bromine trifluoride. Can react vigorously with oxidzing materials, such as Cla, Cr03,02, NClO4,03, perchlorates, (ACl3 + FClO4), (H2SO4 + permanganates), K2O2(, NH4OH + acetic acid), Na2O2. Moderate explosion hazard A dangerous fire hazard when when exposed to heat or flame. Use with adequate venulation. To fight fire, use foam, CO2, dry chemical. Poisoning occurs most commonly via inhalation of the vapor, although benzene can penetrate the skin and cause poisoning. Locally, benzene has a comparatively strong irritating effect, producing erythema and burning, and, in more severe cases, edema and even blistering. Exposure to high concentrations of the vapor (3000 ppm or higher) may result from failure of equipment or spillage. Such exposure, while rare in industry, may cause acute poisoning, characterized by the narcotic action of benzene on the central nervous system. The anesthetic action of benzene is sirmlar to that of other anesthetic gases, consisting of a preluninary stage of excitation followed by depression and, if exposure is continued, death through respiratory failure. The chronic, rather than the acute, form of benzene poisoning is important in industry. It is a recognized leukemogen. There is no specific blood picture occurring in cases of chronic benzol poisoning. The bone marrow may be hypoplastic, normal, or hyperplastic, the changes reflected in the peripheral blood. Anemia, leucopenia, macrocytosis, reticulocytosis, thrombocytopenia, hgh color index, and prolonged bleeding time may be present. Cases of myeloid leukemia have been reported. For the worker, repeated blood examinations are necessary, inclulng hemoglobin determinations, white and red cell counts, and dlfferential smears. Where a worker shows a progressive drop in either red or white cells, or where the white count remains below <5000/mm3 or the red count remains below 4.0 d o n / m m 3 , on two successive monthly examinations, the worker should be immediately removed from benzene exposure. Elimination is chefly through the lungs, when fresh air is breathed. The portion that is absorbed is oxidized, and the oxidation products are combined with sulfuric and glycuronic acids and eliminated in the urine. This may be used as a lagnostic sign. Benzene has a definite cumulative action, and exposure to a relatively hgh concentration is not serious from the point of view of causing damage to the blood-forming system, provided the exposure is not repeated. In acute poisoning, the worker becomes confused and dizzy, complains of tightening of the leg muscles and of pressure over the forehead, then passes into a stage of excitement. If allowed to remain exposed, he quickly becomes stupefied and lapses into coma. In nonfatal cases, recovery is usually complete with no permanent disabhty. In chronic poisoning the onset is slow, with the symptoms vague; fatigue, headache, dizziness, nausea and loss of appetite, loss of weight, and weakness are common complaints in early cases. Later, pallor, nosebleeds, bleeding gums, menorrhagia, petechiae, and purpura may develop. There is great inlvidual variation in the signs and symptoms of chronic benzene poisoning.
Hazardous Substances Data
71-43-2(Hazardous Substances Data)

Raw materials And Preparation Products

Material Safety Data Sheet(MSDS)

msds information

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